interview advice

Doing Good Is Good For You

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Interview with Kate Rubin, Vice President Social Responsibility (UnitedHealth Group)

By Amy Rossi, Editor and Kellie Gunderman, Assistant Editor (MSEJ)

The Military Service Employment Journal (MSEJ) recently had the opportunity to interview Ms. Kate Rubin of UnitedHealth Group (UHG) about the effects of volunteering on your health for our WorkLife Wellness section.  Kate’s clear passion and sheer exuberance for helping others shines through in everything she does, which undoubtedly stems from her upbringing.  She was raised to give back to the community and remembers taking gifts and meals to those who could not get out during the holidays.  Today, her desire to not only give back, but educate others on the long-term benefits of volunteering is astounding.

For over three years, Kate has worked with UnitedHealth Group as a leader of the department of social responsibility.  She has worked for big, medium and small companies and has lived all over the US, allowing her to empathize with the military lifestyle.  Moreover, Kate is an avid supporter of the military, proudly devoted to her nephew who is serving as a Drill Sergeant at Ft. Jackson.  “I’m just thrilled to talk to you about my passions and volunteering.  This is a great thing that you are doing with the crossover between volunteering and work life.”  When Kate was asked what she would say to someone who does not think they have the time to volunteer, her answer was simple: “You don’t have time not to volunteer!”

 

2013 Volunteering and Health Study

UnitedHealth Group, like many other large companies, chooses to support missions that closely align with their own.  In their case, it is how to help people live healthier lives and build healthier communities.  And so, UnitedHealth Group began the “Doing Good Is Good for You: 2013 Health and Volunteering Study.”  UnitedHealth Group believes that, “To help people live healthier lives and modernize the health care system… it is necessary to be active and responsible citizens in our local communities and around the world.”  They knew that volunteerism played a vital role in that mission, but they wanted to explore the idea that volunteering helps people feel healthier and helps employers as well.

2013 Health & Volunteering Study

Now that we know volunteering as an individual promotes an overall sense of wellbeing, how does it help companies?  According to the 2013 Volunteering and Health Study, “If people are feeling healthier because they are volunteering, they will feel better at work as well.”  This causes less stress in the workplace, allowing employees to focus on their work and interpersonal skills.  Overall, volunteerism directly correlates to a positive impact on any company.

How does a company begin to encourage their employees to volunteer?

UnitedHealth Group seems to have the answer: 81% of their employees along with 96% of their executives volunteer in their local communities.  This is more than double what most companies contribute as a whole.  Last year alone, UHG documented 460,000 hours of volunteering.  Kate Rubin suggests that companies should explore volunteer opportunities for their employees that relate to things that are important to them as a company.  Then, set the focus. UnitedHealth Group does this by placing employees together into work teams and providing incentives.  For example, in 2013 anyone who completes 30 hours of volunteering per year, receives $200 to donate to the charity of their choice.  In 2014, that amount is set to increase to $500.

With families and careers, it is no wonder why employees may find it difficult to find the time to volunteer.  However, UnitedHealth Group has solved this problem with an innovative online platform: micro volunteering.  The program allows employees to set up a profile with their skills and interests so that virtual opportunities can be sent straight to their computers.  Volunteering tasks range from accounting and logo design to translation projects; the opportunities are worldwide across 28 different countries.  In as little as 15 minutes, their employees can give back, and if you still think families can get in the way, UnitedHealth Group recently announced their lead micro volunteering expert of 2013: A mother of five, from Colorado.

The Bottom Line:

When people think about wellness they tend to imagine the physical, but Kate Rubin believes, “it’s all about the balance between mental and physical… making sure there is time for work, exercise, friends and family.  That balance is so critical.” In fact, Kate began her New Year’s Resolution early this year by making a commitment to get back into that balance and really focus on her own physical health.  She ended our interview by telling the MSEJ, “It’s a journey. It’s not a destination. I fall down and get back up and try again.”

This article was originally published in the MSEJCASY-MSCCN would like to thank Kate Rubin and UnitedHealth Group for this wonderful contribution to the WorkLife Wellness section of the Military Service Employment Journal.  United Health Foundation is a supporter of the Military Spouse Corporate Career Network and UnitedHealth Group has many strong connections with the military community, including focusing on increasing access and reduced healthcare costs.  UnitedHealth Group also manages three million members of the military in the Tricare West region and was named one of the top 100 military friendly employers by GI Jobs in 2013.  

Veterans Day: Remembering that Number

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24324_506457942804_1714822_nBy: SFC Josh Marquis (pictured)

As November approaches, we often look at the calendar in anticipation of that one day when most health food addicts suffer a significant emotional event.  But nestled quietly between the 10th and the 12th, annotated with neatly printed text, is another significant event known as “Veterans Day.”

“How’d that get there?” we often ask ourselves.

The celebration of November 11th dates back nearly 100 years.  President Wilson took to the national stage on November 11, 1919 to recognize the first anniversary of the armistice between Germany and the Allied nations.  While honoring the brave men who perished during World War I, he referred to this day as “Armistice Day.”  It was celebrated as such for another 35 years before being renamed “Veterans Day” in 1954 after a World War II veteran named Raymond Weeks fought to expand the holiday.  His hopes were to not only honor those veterans who gave their lives for this great nation during World War I, but to celebrate all veterans.  On May 26, 1954, President Eisenhower signed a bill expanding the holiday which would later become known as “Veterans Day” during a Congressional amendment on June 1, 1954.

While “Memorial Day” recognizes those who made the ultimate sacrifice, “Veterans Day” recognizes all Veterans, both past and present, while still honoring all veterans who have passed away, regardless of cause.  But just how many people are we honoring?  According the U.S. Census Bureau (2011), even though 1.47 million veterans are serving on active duty at any given time, there are 21.5 million veterans in the United States today.  That’s just 7% of the population.  Dating back to June 14, 1775, some estimates show an astonishing 100 million people have served in the American military.

Wherever you may be on Monday, November 11, think of that number.  Whether you’re spending the day celebrating with a classic American barbeque, spending the day out with family, earning your next paycheck, or relaxing at home, remember that number.  Without that number, the United States may still be paying levies to the Queen; Europe may be in the hands of the Nazis; the United States may be dependent on the Japanese; Communism may rule the world; Saddam may be in control of the world’s oil; and the United States may have never gotten justice for September 11, 2001.

This Veterans Day, if you know a veteran, hug them, praise them, look them in the eye and shake their hand.  Whatever you do, thank them.  Remember that number because, without it, the unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness may no longer be self-evident.

Read more Veteran stories in the Military Service Employment Journal at msej.info

Citi and CredAbility Join with IAVA, TAPS, and MSCCN to Launch Online Financial Education and Counseling Program for Armed Forces Members, Veterans, and Their Families

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Recent data shows that members of the armed forces, veterans and their families face particular financial difficulties. According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, the unemployment rate for veterans who have served on active duty since September 2001 was 12.1 percent in 2011, compared to the national unemployment rate of 8.9 percent that same year. According to Debt.org, more than 25 percent of military families that have credit card debt carry a balance of more than $10,000, and a third of military families report they have trouble paying monthly bills.  Also, 2011 data from CredAbility of veterans who went through credit counseling shows that veterans ages 29 or younger have average monthly expenses that exceed their net income by $880 as well as average credit card debt of $7,234.

 

CredAbility ReConnect addresses these financial challenges with a set of online tools, education and counseling. Individuals and families served by IAVA, TAPS, and MSCCN will be able to access custom versions of the online program, free of charge, tailored to the unique needs of the veterans, families and survivors they serve. Members of the armed forces, veterans and their families not affiliated with these organizations can access CredAbility ReConnect at www.CredAbility.org/recon.

 

CredAbility ReConnect covers:

 

  • The Financial Impact of Deployment – Online courses to help military families deal with the financial implications of a deployment, including how to manage money while a spouse is overseas.
  • Easing the Transition – Online courses, such as “Understanding Your Military Benefits” and “Reconnecting Financially,” help ease the financial transition for those who have recently left the armed forces or experienced the death of a servicemember.
  • Budget and Credit Counseling – Personalized financial “check-ups” help users manage their money better and prioritize spending through easy-to-follow plans. Online courses help with wise use of credit, debt reduction strategies, and setting goals for a healthier financial future.
  • Debt Management Plans – Custom affordable repayment plans, often with reduced interest rates, fees and penalties for qualified individuals, help visitors pay down debt, negotiate with creditors and regain their financial footing.
  • Foreclosure Prevention and Home Buying Guidance- HUD-certified counselors provide guidance to individuals who are behind on their mortgage payments or face foreclosure, as well as to prospective homebuyers.

 

Free one-on-one credit counseling with a CredAbility certified counselor       is also available by telephone at 888-808-7285.

“A serious need exists for a targeted set of financial assistance services like CredAbility ReConnect,” said Mechel Glass, Vice President of Community Outreach for CredAbility and a veteran of the Persian Gulf War. “Young veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan might want to create a plan to make regular deposits to an emergency savings account and pay down debt. And active duty servicemembers might want to create a financial support plan for spouses and children during times of deployment or transfer, or in the event of a loss that leaves them financially vulnerable. CredAbility ReConnect will provide the education and counseling to show them how to accomplish these personal finance goals.”

 

“Every member of the armed forces has sacrificed a great deal in service to their country, and in addition to the challenges of military service, many face tremendous financial pressures as well,” said Suni Harford, Citi’s Regional Head of Markets for North America. “These brave men and women receive extensive military training, but far too few of them receive any kind of formal financial education. CredAbility ReConnect was developed to help these deserving men and women build financial capability and achieve long-term economic security for themselves and their families.”

Citi is an established leader in the national effort to support veterans and active-duty servicemembers, including those in the Guard and Reserve, and CredAbility ReConnect is the latest initiative in a  coordinated, firm-wide effort in this area. In May, Citi launched Citi Salutes, a one-stop resource that consolidates all of Citi’s       programs, products and partnerships that support the greater veterans community. Later this month, Citi will be helping to lead the second annual Veterans on Wall Street conference and job fair in New York, an initiative co-founded by Citi to develop career opportunities in the financial services industry for veterans.

About Citi

Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer  accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions.  Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.

Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com       | Twitter: @Citi | YouTube: www.youtube.com/citi       | Blog: http://new.citi.com       | Facebook: www.facebook.com/citi       | LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/citi

 

About Citi Community Development

 

Citi Community Development (CCD) is leading Citi’s commitment to achieve       economic empowerment and growth for underserved individuals, families       and communities by expanding access to financial products and services,       and building sustainable business solutions and innovative partnerships.       Our focus areas include: commercial and philanthropic funding;       innovative financial products and services; and collaborations with       institutions that expand access to financial products and services for       low-income and underserved communities. For more information, please       visit www.citigroup.com/community.

About CredAbility

CredAbility is one of the leading nonprofit credit counseling and       education agencies in the United States, serving clients in all 50       states plus the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the US       Virgin Islands, in both English and Spanish. In addition, the       organization provides in-person counseling through its branch network of       more than 25 offices located across the southeast.

Founded in 1964, CredAbility is a family of Consumer Credit Counseling       Service agencies that includes CCCS of Greater Atlanta, CCCS of Central       Florida and the Florida Gulf Coast, CCCS of Palm Beach County and the       Treasure Coast, CCCS of East Tennessee, CCCS of Central Mississippi and       CCCS of Upstate South Carolina. The nonprofit agency is accredited by       the Council on Accreditation and is a member of the Better Business       Bureau and the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).       Governed by a community-based board of directors, CredAbility is funded       by creditors, clients, individual donors and grants from foundations,       businesses and government agencies. Service is provided 24/7 by phone at       800.251.2227 and online at www.CredAbility.org.

About Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA)

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) is the nation’s first       and largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to improving       the lives of our newest veterans and their families. Through innovative       health, education, employment and community programs, IAVA strives to       build an empowered generation of veterans who provide sustainable       leadership for our country and their local communities. Learn more, get       involved and join IAVA’s over 200,000 Member Veterans and Civilian       Supporters. For more information, visit http://iava.org/.

About Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS)

TAPS provides immediate and long-term emotional help, hope, and healing       to all who are grieving the death of a loved one in military service to       America. TAPS meets its mission by providing peer-based emotional       support, grief and trauma resources, camps for children, seminars for       adults, casualty casework assistance, a 24/7 resource and information       helpline, and connections to community-based care. For more information,       visit http://www.taps.org/.

About Military Spouse Corporate Career Network (MSCCN)

Corporate America Supports You (CASY) and the Military Spouse Corporate       Career Network (MSCCN) were chartered in 2004 as private sector       non-profit organizations that provide no-cost employment readiness,       vocational training, and one-on-one job placement services for National       Guard, Reserves, transitioning service members, veterans, military       spouses, homeless female veterans, war wounded and caregivers of war       wounded.

CASY-MSCCN operates as an employment partner to all branches of the       Armed Forces, including the National Guard and Coast Guard, through       Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs). In addition, without funding and       through its partnership with Kenexa and DirectEmployers Association,       CASY-MSCCN created and maintains the National Guard Employment program,       which provides training and job placement to returning National Guard       personnel and their families. Each of these high-touch programs is       supported by solid partnerships with major corporations, mid-size       companies and small businesses that provide employment opportunities for       our military-affiliated job seekers. Our state-of-the-art technology,       built by Kenexa, provides real-time, verifiable tracking numbers and       outcome reports to our employment partners, military services, and       donors. For more information, visit http://www.msccn.org/.

Contact:

For Citi David Roskin, 212-559-4767 david.roskin@citi.com or For CredAbility Scott Scredon, 404-653-8833 Scott.Scredon@CredAbility.org or John McCosh, 404-260-3108 John.McCosh@CredAbility.org or For IAVA Michelle McCarthy, 212-982-9699 michelle@iava.org or For MSCCN Amy Rossi, 804-943-3325 a_rossi@msccn.org or For TAPS Ami Neiberger-Miller, 202-588-8277 ami@taps.org
@yahoofinance on Twitter, become a fan on Facebook

 

Find Work Anytime: TAX Relief Edition

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It’s that time a year again, when everyone wipes the sweat from their forehead.  Some with a sigh of relief that their taxes are filed, others wondering if they are going to get audited, the rest out of panic if they can complete it in time or get granted an extension!  Regardless of the category you fall  into, this time of year can cause even the calmest individuals to lose their cool.

Wherever, you may be take a deep sigh and be thankful that tax day is over and it only comes once a year!  Now that the big day has passed we can focus our attention on what our future may hold.  Perhaps, a new job making more money?

If you would like an idea of the types of jobs to look at, check out this week’s Find Work Anytime positions, and thousands of other positions for military affiliated applicants can be found at our Job Seeker’s page.  The first three opportunities can be found by clicking on “Search for Openings with MSCCN”. The remaining jobs can be found by clicking on “Search for Job Openings with JobCentral National Labor Exchange”.

  1. Convergys Home Agent Program, Customer Service, Anywhere, 60733BR
  2. Loss Prevention Specialist, Edmond, OK, 64382BR
  3. Center Customer Service Associate, Seattle, WA, 64356BR
  4. Outside Sales, Unit Parts Exchange (West Haven, CT)
  5. Temporary CNC Operator, Capewell Components Co., LLC (Cromwell, CT)
  6. Welder/Fabricator, Sevenson Environmental Services, Inc. (Niagara Falls, NY)
  7. Billing Specialist, RPCN (Rochester, NY)
  8. Cook/Dietary Aide – Various Per Diem shifts – New Britain, Kindred Health (New Britain, CT)
  9. Dietary Aide – Various shifts – New Britain, CT, Kindred Health (New Britain, CT)
  10. Store manager – Fairfield, CT, Starbucks Coffee Company (Fairfield, CT)
  11. Store manager – Norwalk, CT, Starbucks Coffee Company (Norwalk, CT)
  12. 12.  Mgr-Customer Service Center, Suburban Propane LP – SLP (Uncasville, CT)
  13. Case Manager, RN – Full Time – Kindred DeLima, Kindred Health (Henderson, NV)

Weekly Words of Inspiration

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Deb’s Dish on Work Life
“If you constantly begrudge the success of others – you’ll never enjoy the company of great minds”
. . . Deb Kloeppel, CEO, MSCCN

Read Deb’s latest articles at www.msccn.org

Featuring articles published on:

Army Wife Network & Blue Star Families

Find Work Wednesday – Starting Over Edition (Stepping Stone Careers)

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We recently changed cable providers.  This was my husband’s idea as, I suspect, he was tired of listening to me complain about how expensive our other provider was getting.  So, he signed us up for one of those “first customer introductory rates.” So far, I am not a fan.  While I was painfully aware of our previous provider’s inadequacies, at least, they were familiar inadequacies.  I had made friends with the remote control, memorized how to find my favorite channels and could, for the most part, find my way around the menu selections.   Now, I have to start all over again.

The reality of starting over hasn’t been completely unfamiliar to me in the last few years. Like so many, I lost my job a few years ago – a casualty of the economy and corporate politics at the upper echelons at the company I worked for 10 years.  The thought of having to start over in a new career or with a new company can be daunting.  In truth, it can be paralyzing.  We can become so overwhelmed with the “where do I begin” emotions of starting over that we don’t move forward at all.  It can be an intimidating thing when that ladder of success slips out from under you and you have to start climbing back up from the bottom again.

But, starting over also gives us the opportunity to reinvent ourselves…to wipe the slate clean and to ask that proverbial question, “What do I want to be when I grow up?”  And, not just ask that question, but begin moving towards that goal whether that means
volunteering, going back to school or starting in an entry level position in a new career.

This week’s Find Work Wednesday focuses on our partnership with Convergys and their work from home program and call center programs.   Convergys offers entry level or call center opportunities, supporting many fortune 500 companies in a customer service, light sales or technical support in a “work from home” format or at various call centers located across the country.

While it’s not for everyone, a work from home option is a great opportunity for military spouses or anyone looking for the stability of a full time job but the flexibility of a career that can be boxed up and moved to various duty stations or based around the needs of a family at home.  The time and money saved on a daily commute, meals out and work wardrobe can be used for more important things in life.

The flexibility of working from home also means less interruption or hiccups in career advancement that often comes with frequent moves.  Your seniority, training and expertise moves with you.  Just because you may start in an “entry-level position”, that doesn’t mean you have to stay there.  Not only does Convergys allow employees the option of working in the comfort of their own home, they also offer opportunities for career advancement within Convergys and possibly beyond.

If you have this special niche and want to take on a real challenge check out this week’s Find Work Wednesday position and thousands of other position for military affiliated applicants can be found at our Job Seeker’s page.  The first five opportunities can be found by clicking on “Search for Opening with MSCCN”. The remaining jobs can be found by clicking on “Search for Job Openings with JobCentral National Labor Exchange”.

 

  1. CenterCustomer Service Assoc, FedEx,  Kansas City, MO 52685BR
  2. Center Customer Service Assoc, Denver, CO 52681BR
  3. Center Specialist, Chapel Hill, NC 52679BR
  4. Center Customer Service Coord, West Jordan, UT 52674BR
  5. Sales Customer Service Spec, San Diego, CA 52613BR
  6. Sales and Servie Rep II, Convergys, Valdosta, GA
  7. Manager, Operations-Call Center, Convergys, Denver, CO
  8. Cust Serv & Problem Res Rep I, Jacksonville, NC
  9. Insurance Sales Representative, Wichita, KS
  10. Cust Service & Sales Reps Now Hiring $10.00/hr, Chattanooga, TN

Find Work Wednesday: Back to Earth Edition

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You might have read that a satellite recently fell from space.  I did hear NASA was going to cut back on the space program, but letting satellites and space stations fall uncontrollably to earth is a little extreme.  I was wondering if NASA is still hiring and do you have to be a rocket scientist to work there.

Like many kids I dreamed of being an astronaut and what earth would look like from a tiny medal capsule in space.  I remember the day when everyone gathered in 6th grade common room to watch as a teacher was allowed to travel up to space as part of the crew.  I also remember the collective gasps and the dead silence watching the shuttle explode. I remember that the teachers quickly turned off the television and ushered us back to our rooms in confusion.

Today, we have sophisticated technology once only dreamed of.  So when all of the outrage occurred over the satellite falling and no one being able to predict where, I thought back to the classroom so long ago.  How soon we forget how far our technology has come in the last 25 years! Where will we be in the next 25 years, maybe you will be part of the next breakthrough!

All of this week’s Find Work Wednesday positions and thousands of other positions for military spouses can be found at our Job Seeker’s page. The first four opportunities can be found by clicking on “Search for Openings with MSCCN”. The remaining jobs can be found by clicking on “JobCentral National Labor Exchange”.

  1. Opportunities for Disabled, Aerospace, Nationwide, 51892BR
  2. Intelligence Specialist, Aerospace, Huntsville, AL, 51891BR
  3. Director of Flight, Aerospace, Kern County, CA, 51890BR
  4. Aerospace Engineer, Aerospace, Santa Clara County, CA 51889BR
  5. Student Career Experience, Aerospace, Hampton, VA 51888BR
  6. Technical Project Manager, Aerospace, Hampton, VA 51887BR
  7. Proposal Manager BAE      Systems (Sterling     Heights, MI)
  8. Director, Proposal Operations BAE      Systems (Sterling     Heights, MI)
  9. Mechanical Engineering Intern- Junior Raytheon (Plano, TX)
  10. Systems Test – Systems Engineer I Raytheon (Tucson, AZ)
  11. Mechanical Engineering Intern-Sophomore Raytheon (Plano, TX)
  12. Mgr I Manufacturing Engrg Raytheon (Dallas, TX)
  13. Sr. Program Manager Raytheon (Aurora, CO)
  14. Sr. Program Manager Raytheon (Aurora, CO)
  15. Sr. Program Manager Raytheon (Garland, TX)
  16. Sr. Program Manager Raytheon (Garland, TX)